The Salvation Army’s General has appointed the current territorial leaders of the New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga Territory, Commissioners Robert and Janine Donaldson, to new appointments at International Headquarters in London. The territory’s new leaders will be Colonels Andy and Yvonne Westrupp, who currently lead the Army’s work in Papua New Guinea. Both couples will take up their new appointments on 1 January 2017.
Commissioner Robert Donaldson is appointed International Secretary for Accountability and Governance. He will coordinate The Salvation Army’s global Accountability Movement, which aims to improve some of the Army’s systems and develop a stronger culture of accountability across the 127 countries in which The Salvation Army is at work. Commissioner Donaldson will direct the overall work of the Accountability Movement’s four key areas: governance, child protection, finance, and impact measurement. He will also continue to lead the governance stream.
Commissioner Janine Donaldson will take up the appointment of Zonal Secretary for Women’s Ministries for the South Pacific and East Asia Zone. She will work within the administrative hub for Salvation Army operations across Australia, Hong Kong and Macau, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga, the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia and Myanmar, and Taiwan.
Colonel Andy Westrupp is appointed Territorial Commander and Colonel Yvonne Westrupp Territorial President of Women's Ministries.The Salvation Army has a proud heritage of internationalism and it is usual for the leaders of its various territories and commands to come from other parts of the world, so this is the first time that New Zealand territorial leaders will be succeeded by New Zealanders. The Westrupps are only the sixth New Zealanders to lead the territory in its 133-year history. They will take up their new roles with the rank of commissioner.
‘Although humbled and excited by the opportunities presented by these new appointments, we are naturally sad to be leaving New Zealand’s shores,’ say the Donaldsons, who most recently served in South Africa.
‘We have loved being in our home territory. It’s been an incredible privilege to serve as leaders here and to see all that God is doing through the lives of dedicated people—including many non-Salvationists who help to advance our mission as staff and volunteers. It’s tremendous that Kiwis are following us and we are very excited about that. Andy and Yvonne are so well respected in New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga, and they have a tremendous track record of effective ministry in the territory.
‘We ask all Salvationists to pray for this transition, but to also be very much aware that God is preparing to bless the Army’s ministry in new and exciting ways in the future.’
Colonels Andy and Yvonne Westrupp say they are looking forward to reconnecting with people and supporting the New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga Territory’s mission. ‘We honour Commissioners Robert and Janine Donaldson for their leadership in New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga and feel privileged to be following their dynamic leadership.
‘We have loved our time in Papua New Guinea. The warmth and spiritual passion of Salvationists in this land and the spontaneous growth in Army mission is always energising. However, New Zealand Fiji and Tonga have remained in our hearts so we are delighted to return to home shores. We believe that the Holy Spirit is wanting to once again breathe new life into Salvationists to help us minister together to make a difference for eternity in New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga.’
The Donaldsons and the Westrupps will be together at The Salvation Army’s Now is the Time congress in Wellington from 29 September to 2 October, when the territory will launch its new Mission Plan for the next three years.